Clay is most fragile in its bone-dry state, which is the stage just before firing when all moisture has evaporated from the clay body.
During the bone-dry stage, clay is extremely delicate and prone to cracking or breaking with minimal force. It is essential to handle bone-dry pieces with care to avoid damaging them before firing.
If bone-dry clay is exposed to moisture, it can rapidly reabsorb water and return to a plastic state. This can lead to deformations, loss of details, and structural weaknesses.
When working with bone-dry clay:
- Avoid applying excessive pressure or force.
- Use supportive tools or surfaces when moving or transporting pieces.
- Store bone-dry pieces in a dry, controlled environment.
Understanding the fragility of bone-dry clay is crucial for successful ceramic work, as proper handling and precautions can help preserve the integrity of your pieces.